Days like last Sunday’s club race are a great reminder how beautiful the Coffs Coast can be. Silky smooth water conditions, little or no wind on the bike and cool sunny run conditions made it a treat for those who competed. We also had glowing reports from our “Undercover” Technical Official who observed cyclists from the safety car. However please remember it is not a social ride and you need to stay nine metres behind the cyclist in front of you to avoid a breaking a very important rule, so best leave the chatting on the bike until after you finish.
At the pointy end Joe Kane is fast shedding kilos accumulated over winter and led the men home, fifteen year old Sam Bourke was second and our ever consistent club coach Andrew Rowlings was third. It has been sometime since a junior has finished so high up in the field so well done Sam. Amy Sutton made a welcome return and just pipped Alison Howe with Sarah Marsden third and continuing on from where her mum Kate left off. A few noteworthy performances were none other than our Publicity Officer Pim Heaney (and she didn’t write this) posting a PB so early in the season. Kathy Ward, Jan Rooney, Kara Hirsch and Sian Bignill all had great races. Likewise in the male division where Rueben Van Wyngaardt, Mark Callaghan and Anthony Jephcott all showed improved times. At the season’s end a club champ will be announced and it is no secret that the winner will be someone who has continued to improve their finish times over the season. In the short course congratulations to Isaiah Koopmans and Alison Tarplee who performed well in their divisions
With the Coffs Out festival in town for the weekend it is interesting to note our own diversity within the club. How great it is to see members with plenty of years’ experience such as Ken Crabb, Pete Wood, Jen Williams, Cec Tempone and Tina Benoit continuing to front up and compete. Also a quick glance around you and you’ll see plenty of families having more than one member competing or doing duty with surnames such as O’Mara, Dance, Booth, Marsden, Callaghan, Fergusson, Ylinen, Leckenby/Holly, Benoit, Viles, Stubbs and Tarplee all contributing or competing for bragging rights at the dinner table.
Our next club race is the annual sprint event on 9th November. This event will help fine tune your transition times with competitors competing one, two or three laps of a 250 swim/7km bike and 2km run. Those who like swimming in wetsuits will be especially tested with the three changes, otherwise go retro and leave it at home.
Club Coaches Andrew Rowlings & Phil Benoit have been looking at ways to help develop our junior talent.
If there is sufficient interest, there is the possibility of organising an away race weekend at a sprint event at Robina, Gold Coast on 18 January 2015.
The main objective of the weekend is to get the juniors ready for the All Schools competition a little later in the year, and to become accustomed to an away race and the little things that can assist in making it a success.
Should enough juniors be keen, costings and further details will be compiled, based on the number of participants and include race entry, food, accommodation and sundry expenses.
Those who are keen to participate will be expected to follow a structured training schedule for three weeks prior to the event, which should be achievable due to the school holiday period.
Andrew has put together a rough timetable along with some further details, which is attached to this newsletter. Check it out and let Andrew or Phil know if you want it taken further. Andrew can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, and at email@example.com.
ON YA BIKE
The annual On Ya Bike community breakfast will be held this Sunday 2 November from 7 – 9:30am.
This year the breakfast is on a weekend so that people have more time to enjoy a relaxing ride and bring along their families. The breakfast will be in the Coffs Harbour TAFE campus, Hardacre Street. It is next door to the Botanic Gardens so you can park your bike and go to the Sustainability Festival after breakfast (from 10am).
This year NSW TAFE hospitality students and teachers will be preparing and serving a healthy delicious breakfast for all riders.
See more at: http://www.coffsharbour.nsw.gov.au/onyabike and updates on Facebook.
PORT MACQUARIE 70.3 REPORT
By Michael McFarlane
If you had told me two years ago that I would ‘enjoy’, let alone complete a 70.3 triathlon, I would have thought you were crazy. After doing my first Port Half Ironman event last weekend, some of you may have noticed, I am unable to get the grin off my face!
I joined the start with a couple of notable and equally excited club representatives and 70.3 virgins, Ian Swanborough, Paul Herring, Shaun Lawer and Joshua Doak. All of us were solicited into the event during a rare wine appreciation evening, by club stalwart, Mark Griffiths. While I doubted my capacity, I knew that if I agreed to join the group, I was with friends and a mediocre race performance would escape the patronizing folly and sledging one would expect from other collections of misfits.
The start was in waves by age group. I was in a group of about 70. It was a very civilized deep water start, at the height of high tide in the picturesque Hastings river. The hype was high and the energy oozing from my fellow competitors was positive and reassuring. Before the starters hooter, I reminded myself of the words of a seasoned friend and valiant competitor, “Enjoy the race”. All the hard work had been done and there was nothing else to do, so I smiled, the hooter sounded and the race was on.
Focus, time for swim efficiency rather than speed.
I was wary of tides sucking me into tributaries but this never eventuated. Other than heading for the wrong buoys at one stage and a bit of anxiety, the swim went well. The course glides through a vast array of anchored vessels, making for a visually memorable leg. I was helped along on the turn with, what appeared to be, a gentle outgoing tide. In shallow water, I remember seeing the sandy bottom almost effortlessly glide by as if I was flying above an undulating terrain. Before I knew it, I was around the last buoy and out of the water and onto red carpet with my name echoing from the speakers. I was conscious of the smile on my face and I thought, had I swum the whole leg with this smile? Was this even possible?
Jenny, in her uber visual pink jacket, was cheering me on in the chute to the bike and this gave me an adrenalin rush.
Into the transition area. I remembered where my bike was! Tick! I was racked amongst my fellow age groupers. I quickly checked the remaining bikes and thought, good, I haven’t embarrassed myself!
T1 took a little longer than I thought. Scoffing down a banana and quick drink, I moved out onto the bike leg. Again, I had been more than adequately warned about the hills. Those feared hills!
It had only been the preceding months I had ridden more than 90kms and I thought this was going to make or break me. Too fast and I risk burning the legs for the run. Too slow will affect my overall time. Should I stand in the hills or sit? Is it too early to take nourishment? Is it too late? Stick to the plan. Don’t draft. Bike is vital, both for nutrition and pacing. Fuel up at 30, 50 and 80k mark. Tick! I know why they call Port Macquarie a “Technical ride”.
I got through the first hills leading out of Port and onto the flat towards Lake Cathie. I drove here the day before and knew what to expect. Overtook a few athletes and felt good. Equally, got passed by a few athletes and felt mediocre. Put me in my place. Towards the end of lap one, the dreaded Mathew Flinders Drive hill, Arggghh. Hard but I expected more. Made it to the top without walking! Tick!
Back into town and to the cheering crowds and support groups. If they could only bottle that as a drug! Common feedback from my fellow 70.3 virgins was that the atmosphere and encouragement from family, supporters, spectators and volunteers was awesome. Port knows how to put on a show and welcome their athletes.
Second lap, a bit slower but constantly thinking about tactics, revising, self-massaging and adjusting. Move the toes around the shoes and move the pressure point in the shoes. I had a frozen foot after a long ride leading up to the event where I couldn’t walk for hours after. That would be a disaster.
Again, through Mathew Flinders Drive hill! Huh; I spit on you. Now the end of the ride is in sight. The run is my favoured leg and when approaching the main street I had a premature sense of euphoria and achievement. Smiling again. Yes, I’ve finished the ride! Only the run to go….. Only the run to go.
Into T2. Bike racked, helmet off, shoes on, hat on, quick drink and I’m off. Wait! That was quick. Too quick. I’ve forgotten something. 500m in, I’ll have to make sure I move my bib to the front for the cameras. Wait, my bib, crap! Running backwards now, looking for someone to ask. Will I get DQ? Start to run back. No don’t be stupid. It doesn’t matter. Turn around. Should I ask someone to get it? No outside help. Just run and hope for the best.
For the next 5ks I’m distracted by my mishap, then the pain took over. “Only a run to go”, what was I thinking? Chest out, shoulders back. Suck it up powder puff. Legs start to twinge. Adjust. Smile at the supporters. Take in drink. Mask the pain. Above all, enjoy the experience. Despite the pain, I’m happy. Very happy.
Second lap now. I’m overtaking way more people. I’m encouraged and I soldier on. Take on drink and watermelon. So good.
Last lap now. Only 10ks. I’ve done this before. Focus on smooth technique, holding form and tempo. I can feel myself slouching, but I can’t do anything about it. Harden up. 5ks to go. Traversing the chute in front of the finish line. So close yet so far. My supporters are there. I can hear them and I think they can see I am smiling, but in hindsight, I can’t remember acknowledging anyone through this segment. Pick up the pace princess. One nasty hill to go and it’s downhill from there. Don’t stop! Don’t stop! I convinced myself, it was against the rules to walk. Not going to walk. Yes! I’m there! Top of Pacific drive running down into town. A short challenge from a young girl looms. She has a team bib on. Sorry sister, not today! Down into the town green and the end looms in the distance.
This is what euphoria is. The crowds are cheering. No one else in the chute. I have it all to myself. No need to sprint. I’m going to savour this. Approaching the finish. What’s going on. Am I getting emotional. This is not familiar to me? Tears! I don’t cry! Apparently not. Over the line now. FINISHED and in a reasonable time. I seek Jen out. Hug now. Race over. Consider that race “ENJOYED”. Kick me!
My longest race leading up to the event was Olympic distance, so I knew some serious training was to be done. The training was the secret to the enjoyment. Hard, tiring and uncompromising. Andrew Rowlings, you are a fabulous coach and I am in your debt.
Jenny and kids, thankyou for your patience, support and understanding. Thanks Mark Griffiths for encouraging me to do my first HIM and knowing I could. To all my training partners and mates, I thank you.
To my fellow club competitors, Ian Swanborough, Paul Herring, Shaun Lawer, Mark Griffiths, Peter Wood, Leighton Rogan, Chris Lefeaux, Jon Waites, Joshua Doak and Jon Murray. Fantastic to share the day with you. You can’t be accused of not doing things together Chris and Jon (even crashing out!). Kudos to Jon Waites for completing the race with a broken arm!
Port HIM Times
Jon WAITES (#476)
Official Time: 06:15:18
Category: 25 | Overall: 488
Joshua DOAK (#234)
Official Time: 05:55:01
Category: 14 | Overall: 394
Leighton ROGAN (#590)
Official Time: 04:48:19
Category: 12 | Overall: 57
Mark GRIFFITHS (#452)
Official Time: 05:31:01
Category: 18 | Overall: 270
Ian SWANBOROUGH (#683)
Official Time: 06:11:13
Category: 40 | Overall: 473
Michael MCFARLANE (#665)
Official Time: 05:28:11
Category: 20 | Overall: 250
Shaun LAWER (#571)
Official Time: 05:48:02
Category: 70 | Overall: 355
Paul HERRING (#92)
Official Time: 05:35:31
Category: 64 | Overall: 292
Peter WOOD (#499)
Official Time: 07:57:24
Category: 6 | Overall: 637
Christine LEFEAUX (#212)
Swim 00:31:41 1.8km
Jonathan MURRAY (#487)
Official Time: 06:23:45
Category: 9 | Overall: 524
SOUTH WEST ROCKS TRI
Entries for South West Rock Tri open on 1st November. Last year this event sold out three weeks prior to the event, so best get you entries in ASAP if you’re going to compete.
This is one of the most scenic events on our local calendar (except the bcu Coffs Tri, of course) and is always well-patronised by CHTC members. It’s a 500m swim in the clear waters of Trial Bay, 25km ride through beautiful South West Rocks and its surrounding bushlands, capped off with a 6km run on roads, trails and beach.
The 2015 race will be held on 22nd February, and will be a great warm-up event for those competing in the bcu Coffs Tri.
Go to http://trialbaytri.com.au/trial-bay-triathlon-2/ for all the details and to enter.
(And don’t forget to go to http://villagesports.com.au/events/bcu-coffs-tri/ to enter before 1st November for you chance to win that Carbon Felt F5 bike).
ONES FOR THE CALENDAR
“All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.” - Michael John Bobak
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